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Rika Lester
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A Good Dog's Life Story

31 March 2014, 23:24

This isn’t supposed to be an in-depth analysis of the latest trends in society or some other pseudo-intellectual treatise. I miss some of the facts, but, if you’re sick and tired of stories about crime, abuse of the elderly and vulnerable, politics, more crime and more politics, you may find this a welcome, if syrupy, break.

In December last year, a group of township children in the Macassar area between the ages of 6 and 11 tried to kill a dog. They had tied a rope around its neck and one around one of its hind legs, and were pulling in opposite directions, while beating the dog with sticks and pelting it with stones.

It broke free and ran onto the N2 freeway, where it was almost hit by a car.

A member of the Cape Town mayoral committee saw this, stopped and rescued the dog. The children were intent on continuing the attack. When a Police captain arrived on the scene, they retreated. The Metro Police protected the dog until Cape Town’s Animal Control Unit removed it and took it to the Animal Welfare Services in Philippi, where it was dubbed “Freeway”.

Apart from serious injuries suffered during the attack – e.g. loss of an eye - the dog was emaciated and severely infested with mange. Adopt-a-Pet was asked to find Freeway a suitable home. More details, including a distressing picture, are on .

Someone adopted Freeway, renamed it Roxo, and it seems to have responded very well to the loving care and treatment it received. It was aggressive towards other dogs, though, and in February this year, it was visited by an animal behaviourist. By then, Roxo had almost doubled its weight, from 24kg to 40kg.

Roxo has its own blog at . There are many references to old rock songs. I’m sure I miss most of them, but I find the blog funny, and it somehow makes me feel that all isn’t lost, and life is not just about crime, sorrow and politics.

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